Maintaining Healthy Attachment with your Teen
What happens to attachment parenting once our children reach adolescence? As the teen years approach the questions around attachment parenting get more complex. We must meet the changes with intention and awareness of how we will maintain connection with our children in a mainstream culture that is demanding we pull away and separate. "I’ve noticed a trend in our culture to get really confused about parenting as our children enter adolescence (that long, strange, magical trip from childhood to adulthood)." For me this has been a difficult learning curve. When my daughter was younger it was easier to understand my role as her mom, but as she is moving towards her teen years, I am noticing the need for adjustments. Connection used to be easy (for the most part): time spend together, smiles, loving touch, and gentle correction. However, as she enters her tween/teen season, I am feeling the tension between the mainstream messages of "individuation"and maintaining attached connection with her. As the author of the article below states: "Most mainstream writing and advising around parenting during the adolescent years focuses on the term “individuating,” and instructs parents to pull back, at the very time our children need to be pulled close." I know that my daughter is changing, and that our relationship must grow and change with her, but I'm not willing to accept that a distant conflictual co-existence is the best I can hope for in the next years. This article gives 8 practical applications for maintaining healthy attachment with your teen child.